The Tipping Point + The Say, I SayFirst ¼ By: Isabella Copello
Subsections 1 • In the first chapter of the book Malcolm Gladwell explains the three rules of epidemics and how the apply to social situations. The rules are: the law of the few, the stickiness factor, and the power context. Just like they apply to real epidemics, they also apply to the social epidemics described in the book.
Hush puppies is a shoe brand that was practically dead until 1994 where it met its tipping point. A few kids from the Soho village started wearing them and they came in back in style. The few people that wore them made others want to wear them as well. How those people made the shoe brand memorable with no specific strategy, just by wearing them. And how an unexpected factor (few guys wearing the shoes again) made many more people act in a different way.
Subsection 2 • To emphasize on the law of the few, Gladwelltells he story of how Paul Revere managed to spread the word that the British were coming al through Boston. William Dawes had the same message but was not able to spread it like Revere did, that´s why he is not famous. Although they had the same message, Revere´s one got to more people because he has rare social gifts that not all people have.
Some of the people who posses these skills, in the book are referred to as connectors. If you think about your circle of friends, you realize how because of one friend you met another and so on. Those people who know a lot of people and like to bring people together are called connectors. They have a special ability to make friends and acquaintances. They manage to be part of many different social groups, while most people are busy choosing their friends the connectors like them all. Making them reachable in a few steps, because it´s likely that people you know, know them.
More than the amount of people they know, they are important because of the type of people they know.
Subsection 3 • Having discussed the importance of connectors, Gladwelll introduces a new key character to social epidemics. They are called mavens. Unlike connectors maven are important because they provide the message while the connectors spread it. Gladwell himself writes “maven are the data bank, connectors are social glue” (70). He uses the example of Mark Alpert, and how he helped a friend to get good deals on his house and car when he first got to Texas
. What is important about Mavens is not what they know but how the pass it along. They know a lot of information but are experts on passing it along. If they were to recommend a restaurant of hotel, you would probably go because of the way they describe it. That is why the Zaggat guide is so powerful. “the reviews are the reports of volunteers-of diners who want to share their opinions with others” (68).
Subsection 4 • In this next part of the book, Gladwell introduces the final key character in spreading social epidemics. The salesman, they are charge of persuading people when they are not convinced about the information they are given. He uses the example of Tom Gau a financial planner who has a lot of money but still works very long hours. He has a great personality and loves helping people. Gua himself writes “ I call my clients my family. I tell them I´ve got two families. I´ve got my wife and my kids and I´ve got you”. (71)
Salesman have an ability to synchronize with people while their talking. Before convincing with words they mesmerize the client with their movement and speech. Gladwell agrees when he writes that they “can draw others into their own rhythms and dictate the terms of interaction” (83). Thanks those three types of people, connectors, mavens, and salesman social epidemics affect and get to they rest of us.